Intro to the College Process (April 16, 2013)


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This show was presented to parents of Wissahickon High School. It covers the basics of college applications, SATs/ACTs, and the process to prepare for applying.

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  • 3 sections for SAT: reading, math, writing (all required)4 sections of ACT: English, math, reading, science, and optional 5th writing section (should just take the writing)Average SAT score: 500 for each sectionAverage ACT score: 17-23
  • ACT is held 6 times per yearSAT is held 7 times per yearConsider if your student is taking SAT II Subject Tests (highly selective schools usually require these)1st standardized test is usually spring of junior year (Jan., Mar)Students typically take standardized tests two or three times
  • Naviance has two different college search engines and can provide feedback of chances
  • College fairs will have hundreds of representatives from all different schools. This is a great time to meet schools that you might not have heard of. Don’t dismiss a school just because you haven’t heard of them. Similarly don’t add a school to your list just because they give away great swag!Mainline (April)MCCC (Oct)NACAC (Nov)
  • Every year over 150 colleges and universities visit Wissahickon, primarily in the fallRepresentatives can be alumni, admission officers, or other people associated with the universityTypically the admission officer visiting will be the actual person reading the student’s applicationImpressions matter! (Both for the student and the school) So please be attentiveSign up at least a day in advance on Naviance
  • Important to visit in order to get the true feel of the campus and meet the students.Spring break visits are ideal because colleges are in session. Summer is good too though.If you can, sign up for tours onlineYou can often stay overnight if you know someone on campus.You can also sit in on a class to see what college is like.If you can’t make it out to a college, many schools have “virtual tours” on their websites. Realize that these will show the best parts of campus, so ideally you will visit in person (several times!)
  • This is how many applications a student should submit2 reach2-4 realistic2 safety/reliable
  • Early ActionEarly DecisionRollingPenn State – priority deadline of Nov. 30Regular
  • Applications can be through school-specific apps or if they are a Common App member, you can use the Common app (there are over 414 schools who accept the CA)Application fees can range from free to over $80
  • Need to get best grades possible in each class. Admission officers look at grade AND rigor of the class
  • Super Score: Most schools will combine different sections of SAT to create a Super Score (at least one exception is Penn State)
  • Super Score: Most schools will combine different sections of SAT to create a Super Score (at least one exception is Penn State)
  • Would rather see more consistent, long term activities rather than short termThis can be sent in with application and also used as a reference while filling out the applicationUseful especially for outside-of-school events
  • Ask 2 teachers by end of junior yearGuidance counselor will write one if requiredBe sure to fill out the “Senior Questionnaire”You don’t need to be raising your hand all of the time in class, but participate and allow the teacher to get to know you
  • Essay – time to express yourself and show who you are as an individualWhat makes you unique or sets you apart?Avoid cliché topics such as a winning sports moment, family tragedy, or too “philosophical” essaysColleges will often give you essay prompts, although one of those could be “Write about any topic of your choosing”Senior English classes will practice these in class
  • FAFSA -fill out no matter what your financial situation – can lead to scholarships, grants, and would be used for graduate schoolFAFSA comes out on Jan. 1 and should be filled out soon after thatWHS will have a Financial Aid Night and FAFSA Completion NightRenew every year while in - - scholarships
  • Rolling can hear 4-6 weeks after full application is submittedEarly Action/Decision hears by end of DecemberNeed to let college know that you are attending by May 1 at the latest.Earlier = better housing
  • Intro to the College Process (April 16, 2013)

    1. 1. Introduction to theCollege ProcessApril 16th, 2013
    2. 2. Junior year-take SATs or ACTs-visits schoolsSenior year-apply in early fall-financial aid in Jan.
    3. 3. SAT ACTSchools accept both equally3 sections 4-5 sectionsScored 200-800 each Composite scored 1-36problem solving based content basedMore vocabulary includes trigonometryPenalty if wrong No www.act.orgUse “Concordance Table” to compare scores
    4. 4. SAT/ACT
    5. 5. MAKING A LISTlocationpopulation sizeacademicscampus lifeathletic programthe “personality” of the school
    6. 6.
    7. 7. FAIRS
    8. 8. Rep Visits
    9. 9. TheWebsite,Brochure,Pamphlet…Reality?
    10. 10. APPLICATION #s
    11. 11. APPLICATION Deadlines
    12. 12. Commonapp.orgorSchool app
    13. 13. APPLICATIONTranscriptDemographicinfoEachcourse andgrade islistedWill WissahickonTom Wissahickon123 Main StreetAmbler, PA 1900201/01M215-5No
    14. 14. APPLICATIONTest ScoresREADING MATH WRITINGMARCH 550 600 530JUNE 590 590 540SAT scores
    16. 16. APPLICATIONActivities
    17. 17. APPLICATION:Recommendations
    18. 18. APPLICATIONEssay
    19. 19. Parting thoughts…Students should be taking primary role in thisprocess…no ifs, ands, or “but mom ishelping”Get best grades possibleTake SATs/ACTs in spring of junior yearVisit schoolsAsk 2 teachers for recommendations by endof junior yearUse FAFSA4Caster to determine financesApply to schools in fall of senior year
    20. 20. If you are not on Naviance…“I need to register”Type in: Student ID#or for parent: P + student ID#